Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Attractive American

2 oz. Applejack
3/4 oz. Campari
1/4 oz. Crème de Violette

Pour over ice, stir well, strain into a cocktail glass.

Applejack is one of the earliest American distillates. It dates back to the late 17th century, predating Bourbon. It's apple brandy, although the 100% apple brandy version is only sold in small quantities. The type I am using is a blend of 35% brandy and 65% neutral spirit (vodka). Today it's sold by the only remaining distiller, Laird's. It's a superb and inexpensive spirit that you should definitely have on your shelf. It can be substituted into many recipes for whiskey, adding an interesting dynamic to old favorites like the Manhattan.

Crème de Violette was until recently considered to be a dead ingredient. It is now sold at many good liquor stores, and one bottle will probably last you a decade or two... or three. A little bit goes a long way and there's not a lot of recipes that call for it, although it is a divine spirit.

I garnished this with a lemon twist, spraying the oils onto the surface of the drink, but I'm not sure it really needs that. The bright yellow provides a nice contrast to the dark, wine colored drink, but spraying the oils should probably be avoided because the drink works perfectly as is, although it's also good... hm.

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